Newcastle United 'rival' Aston Villa for £21.5m-rated Hungarian, Toon favourite delivers transfer warning for Steve Bruce

Newcastle United transfer gossip continues to linger in the background as the prospect of a European Super League (ESL) dominates the national headlines.

Tuesday, 20th April 2021, 11:00 am

It is understood the Magpies and their Premier League counterparts – excluding the ‘big six’ teams – are set to meet today to discuss how to react to the controversial ESL proposal.

But in the meantime, here are the latest rumours surrounding United ahead of the upcoming transfer window:

Newcastle ‘join’ race for Hungarian defender

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Fenerbahce and Hungary defender Attila Szalai has been linked with a move to Newcastle United. (Photo by ATTILA KISBENEDEK / AFP)

Newcastle United have reportedly joined the race to sign Fenerbahce defender Attila Szalai.

That’s according to Hungarian publication Blikk, who reports that Steve Bruce’s side, along with Aston Villa and Leicester City are interested in signing the 23-year-old.

Serie A clubs Napoli and Lazio are also said to be keen on the former Apollon Limassol man, despite him only joining the Turkish club for £1.8million in January on a four-and-a-half-year contract.

However, it is claimed Fenerbahce could be in line for a quick profit after setting a £21.5million asking price – a fee which would make Szalai the most expensive Hungarian footballer of all time.

Szalai has made more than 100 senior appearances in his career so far and represented his country 11 times.

Steve Howey weighs in Joe Willock rumours

Former Newcastle defender Steve Howey has backed his former club to pursue a permanent deal for Joe Willock but warns not to pay “stupid money”.

The 21-year-old has made a solid impression since his January loan switch from Arsenal by scoring three goals in nine games to aid the club’s battle against relegation.

Magpies head coach Steve Bruce, soon after Willock scored the winner in a 3-2 against West Ham on Saturday, revealed he would like to keep him at St James’s Park.

However, one stumbling block could be his rumoured £20million price tag.

Howey told Football FanCast: “I don’t see why they shouldn’t go for him but I think it will be interesting to see how much Arsenal will be asking for him. If they ask for stupid money forget about it because the lad didn’t even play that much at Arsenal.

“He seems as though he’s enjoying his football and after having a closer look at him here I think he’s done very well.”

A message from the Football Clubs Editor

Our aim is to provide you with the best, most up-to-date and most informative Newcastle United coverage 365 days a year.

This depth of coverage costs, so to help us maintain the high-quality reporting that you are used to, please consider taking out a subscription; sign up here.

Your support is much appreciated. Richard Mennear, Football Clubs Editor